The European Union has been denied enforcement authority at the Palestinian Authority terminal along the Egypt-Gaza border.
An agreement for the operation of the Rafah border crossing has limited the role of EU personnel to monitoring. Under a Nov. 23 accord, released on Monday by the privately-owned Independent Media Review & Analysis, the EU would not have the authority to either detain suspicious people or confiscate baggage at Rafah....The accord said an EU monitor could require a PA security officer to re-examine baggage or vehicles deemed suspicious.
But the EU monitor could not order PA officers to block the passage of either suspicious people or baggage. The accord said that an EU monitor unhappy with the performance of PA security officers could register a complaint with their commanders.
Their commanders have already said that no Palestinian will ever be denied entrance. Here, for example, is Mohammed Dahlan, the PA?s Minister of Civil Affairs:
The PA, for its part, won?t prevent any Palestinian from crossing the border
Here is Walid al-Sahi, the Director of Preventative Security at the Rafah Crossing as reported here two weeks ago:
anyone holding a Palestinian identity card will be able to enter
Less than a week has gone by since the Rafiah crossing was opened between Gaza and Egypt and the Israeli security establishment is extremely worried by the new reality, which was defined Wednesday by a senior security source as "total neglect." Army sources argue that because of pressure by Secretary of State Rice, the agreement had been signed too hurriedly, without providing an answer to Israeli security needs.
According to the Israeli understanding of the agreement, the Israeli-Palestinian joint command center was supposed to obtain comprehensive information about whomever is passing from Gaza to Egypt and the reverse. In actuality, since the crossing has been opened, Israel only receives pictures of whomever is crossing and only eight minutes or so later information arrives about the identity of the person passing through. In that time, it is possible to go through the crossing without Israeli security authorities knowing the identity of the person. A senior member of the General Security Services remarked: "It's like watching a movie without any voice or subtitles."
After raising the matter with the EU representative, it became clear that there was no common understanding. The EU's Italian general argued that he doesn't recognize a requirement to pass on data to Israel in real time. Maj.-Gen. (res.) Amos Gilad, who heads the political-military section of the Ministry of Defense, stated that the critical clause exists: "With this situation, the agreement is worthless."
Wednesday Politically Correct Linkfest Party
Some of the most politically correct words of 2005: Deferred Success rather than Failure- so as not to embarrass those that do not succeed. Misguided Criminals:One of the Phrases used by the BBC instead of the word terrorists Womyn: For women to distance their place from men. Intrinsic Attitude: A phrase used by Harvard President Lawrence Summers to explain low numbers of womyn in engineering CE (Common Era) to replace AD (Latin for Year of The Lord) Thought Shower rather than Brainstorming- not to offend those with brain disorders This is an open link trackback party. Please link here